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£13 million invested in research leaders of the future

The Leverhulme Trust Board today announced the thirteen winners of its Research Leadership Awards for 2012. Each award is worth up to £1 million, funding subjects across the whole range of the sciences, humanities and social sciences, with topics as diverse as solar energy harvesting in biomimetic photovoltaics, the unexplored side of multilingualism, and local health inequalities in an age of austerity.

Universities were each restricted to selecting just one candidate who could demonstrate that the work of his or her research group would bring about a fruitful reshaping of the disciplinary landscape. The calibre of bids was exceptionally high and the task of selecting these thirteen was correspondingly challenging. As Professor Gordon Marshall, the Trust’s Director, said: “By restricting each university to one candidate only, the peer reviewers were presented with a gathered field comprising some of the most promising scholars in the UK, and the breadth and depth of talent that has been revealed bodes well for the future of UK research”.

This major investment in universities from across the UK, including the Universities of St Andrews, Exeter and Oxford, will fund teams of research assistants and research students under the direction of some of the most dynamic young research leaders of the future over the next five years. Dr Graham Cookson of King’s College London explains what the award means to him: “It is a great honour to be awarded a Leverhulme Trust Research Leadership Award. I am very excited to start work on this project which, given the current economic climate, could not be more timely or salient”.

The universities minister, David Willetts said: "This is a very welcome initiative from a leading charitable trust. This substantial investment in the next generation of academic leaders from such a diverse set of disciplines bodes well for the future of UK research".

A full list of awards made can be found here: www.leverhulme.ac.uk/news/awards/recent.cfm

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